Darren Hayes Is Back: New Single, New Video, New Album In The Fall
Following the split up of Savage Garden, Darren Hayes recorded his debut solo album Spin, produced by Walter Afanasieff, who had previously worked with Hayes on Savage Garden's sophomore album, Affirmation. First single, "Insatiable" peaked at #3 in Hayes' native Australia and #1 in New Zealand. Internationally, "Insatiable" was a top ten hit in both Sweden and the UK, even peaking at #77 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #11 on the Billboard Hot Dance/Club Play Chart. Hayes went on to release 3 more singles from the album, "Strange Relationship," "I Miss You," and "Crush (1980 Me)," all of which were top twenty hits in the UK. The album itself did alright on the charts as well, coming in at #3 on the ARIA Album Charts, #2 on the UK Albums Charts and #35 on the Billboard 200 chart.
By the time I realized Darren Hayes was recording solo music, he was already gearing up for the release of his second album, 2004's The Tension and the Spark, produced by Hayes and Robert Conley. The album was decidedly more electronica-influenced than his debut, which more teetered on the edge between pop and R&B. Released in September by Hayes' long time label Columbia Records, The Tension and The Spark failed to have the same impact as his debut, peaking at #8 in Australia and #13 in the UK. While first single, "Pop!ular" was a hit at home (peaking at #3), over the in the UK it just missed the top ten, coming in at #12. Over in the States, "Pop!ular" earned Darren Hayes his first and only Billboard Hot Dance/Club Play #1, thanks to a remix package that included mixes by Almighty, Wayne G, Peter Presta, Jason Nevins, Guido Osorio, Johnny Budz and more.
After the release of Truly Madly Completely: The Best of Savage Garden in 2005, which featured two solo tracks by Hayes' including one of my favorites, "So Beautiful," Hayes announced that he had parted ways with his label, Columbia Records, and started his own indie label Powdered Sugar. 2007 saw the release of Hayes' third album, This Delicate Thing We've Made, much of which was co-written by Conley and produced by Justin Shave. The album was preceded by a promotional single, "Step Into The Light," which peaked at #5 on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play chart with remixes from Dave Pezza, Hook N Sling, Moto Blanco, Shave and Sugar, Tony Moran and Wayne G & Andy Allder. The first official single, "On The Verge Of Something Wonderful" was an electropop gem co-written and co-produced by Hayes and Conley, featuring remixes by Wayne G and Justin Shave. The single was a top twenty hit in the UK and peaked at #29 on the ARIA Singles Chart.
"Talk Talk Talk" is Hayes' first single since 2008's "Casey," off his third album. Co-written and produced by Carl Falk (Delta Goodrem, Nicole Scherzinger, Gavin DeGraw), mixed by Robert Orton (Lady Gaga) and mastered by Bob Ludwig, "Talk Talk Talk" is a brilliant and very welcome comeback for Darren Hayes, who's been out of the spotlight entirely too long if you ask me. According to Hayes, "Talk Talk Talk" can be described as "peace talks between two lovers at war," and is "a slice of glorious synth-laden modern pop with swirling live strings and heartfelt lyrics" according to the press release. The single, released worldwide on June 23rd is the first to be taken from Hayes' fourth album, Secret Codes and Battleships, due out in October through Mercury Records/Universal Music Australia. Surprisingly, the single only managed to peak at #79 on the ARIA Singles Chart, which isn't promising at all. Check out the visually stunning video below, directed by Hayes' longtime partner Richard Cullen.